Phil “CM Punk” Brooks’ (pictured) MMA debut was 19 months in the making. It took all of 134 seconds for everyone to realize the UFC isn’t for him.
It’s perfectly fine to pursue a dream, but this opportunity was served with a silver spoon and he choked on it. When the UFC signed Brooks, then-UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta claimed his first opponent would be someone “recognizable.” Instead, they gifted him unknown Mickey Gall, someone who started out in the amateurs and was perfect through just two professional fights.
Make that an easy three.
Being a pro athlete isn’t a right of passage, it’s a privilege that only a very small fraction of the population get to experience. Even in a sport as relatively new as MMA, most have to earn their way into the big leagues.
Just because you’re famous for being a good fake fighter shouldn’t mean you automatically get to fight with the big boys for real.
The one thing Brooks had going for him was his many years of Brazilian jiu jitsu training under the famed Gracies under his belt. Guess what? He got tapped by an MMA fighter who’s just 10 months removed from competing in a local organization called Dead Serious MMA.
If Brooks wants to keep chasing this MMA pipe dream, it needs to be outside of the UFC for a promotion like Dead Serious MMA, where the talent level is closer to inept than expert. Yes, I’m dead serious.
From the sound of things, UFC president Dana White also believes Brooks should be minor league bound.
“He probably shouldn’t have his next fight in the UFC,” White told Fight Network. “Just like I said with Brock [Lesnar], having your first fight in the UFC is tough, even if it’s against a guy who is 2-0. This is a tough place to learn.”
After the Ohio Athletic Commission revealed Monday that Brooks scored a whopping cash grab of $500,000 for his MMA debut, it’s understandable why White doesn’t want him back inside the UFC anytime soon.
From the UFC’s standpoint, a one-time $500K investment to get Brooks to make his MMA debut under their banner was well worth it. With his rabid WWE following, the UFC easily recouped that money with the bump in pay-per-view buys.
But White’s no fool. He knows there’s nothing Brooks can do to improve his game enough to warrant that kind of payday in his sophomore performance. More importantly, there’s no way MMA fans are going to shell out another $54.95 to watch a soon-to-be 38-year-old chase an unattainable target.
At least he had the cajones to do something 99 percent of the people in the world wouldn’t even think about, you say? There isn’t much 99 percent of the people in the world wouldn’t do to make $500,000 in 134 seconds, I say.
Prior to getting embarrassed by Gall at UFC 203, Brooks professed that MMA was not a one-shot deal. He intended on continuing to pursue the sport, win, lose or draw.
Well, he lost. And he’s no longer a UFC draw.